QPR 0-0 Sunderland (1-3 pens): Charlie Austin has late winner controversially ruled out before League One team prevails on penalty shoot-out to claim a spot in the Carabao Cup quarterfinals
- Sunderland scored his three penalties to reserve his place in the quarterfinals
- Charlie Austin, Ilias Chair and Yoann Barbet missed by QPR in shooting
- QPR denied late winner when Charlie Austin’s header was ruled offside
For the fourth consecutive season, Queens Park Rangers left the Carabao Cup to League One opponents, a curse that means their wait for a first cup quarter-final since 1995 will continue.
Instead, it is Sunderland, the 2014 finalists and the lowest-ranked club left in the competition, who will move on after securing victory on a penalty shoot-out.
His followers will enjoy a day in December, a week before Christmas. However, QPR left with a sense of injustice, after a late winner, scored by Charlie Austin, was controversially declared offside.
Sunderland’s Luke O’Nien (left) and Queens Park Rangers’ Lyndon Dykes battle for the ball
Still feeling robbed, Austin’s night got worse. He saw his penalty saved, with Ilias Chair and Yoann Barbet also losing theirs as Sunderland won the penalty shootout 3-1 at QPR’s expense.
This was seventh in the Championship against fourth in League One, two teams with the ambition to end this season with a ‘P’ for promotion alongside their names. His managers made changes, as expected in this competition, with Mark Warburton making six and Lee Johnson seven.
The two sides seemed the same in the first exchanges. Leon Dajaku was the first to try when he tested QPR goalkeeper Seny Dieng before Barbet forced a save from Sunderland’s Lee Burge to his right side.
However, the hosts soon prevailed on the visitors, with Chair initiating a period of control by sending a shot wide from the bottom corner by a yard.
Sunderland’s Carl Winchester (R) tries to evade Moses Odubajo’s challenge
Sunderland’s Frederik Alves came close to making a punt on his own net. He and the 2,731 visiting fans behind that goal breathed a sigh of relief by only conceding a corner.
Andre Gray then tested Burge with little effort. QPR had undoubtedly finished the stronger side half, but remained 0-0 with a quarterfinal spot up for grabs.
The introduction of Austin as a substitute moved the hosts. The 32-year-old was part of the Southampton squad that reached the Carabao Cup final in 2017. In the 66th minute, he launched a fierce volley that crashed over the crossbar.
In 1980, Austin thought he had scored the winning goal. We all did. The players were celebrating, and so were the fans, then the assistant raised his flag. It was a controversial decision with Austin apparently considered offside after Albert Adomah’s shot hit him.
Despite the feeling that they were stolen, QPR continued to investigate, but came to the penalties. Austin saw that he was saved, before Chair overflowed and Barbet swerved, confirming Sunderland’s victory.
QPR’s Andre Gray (L) tries to block a punt by Sunderland’s Bailey Wright